Why We Do It
Clean water is a basic need for human beings. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, they live healthier and more productive lives. However, at least 3,000 children die each day from diseases caused by unsafe water, which is what motivates our members to build wells, install rainwater harvesting systems, and teach community members how to maintain new infrastructure.
While very few people die of thirst, millions die from preventable waterborne diseases, providing the impetus for our members to also improve sanitation facilities in undeveloped countries. Members start by providing toilets and latrines that flush into sewer or safe enclosure and then add education programs to promote hand-washing and other good hygiene habits.
Through our annual wine tasting festival, the Muskogee Rotary Club was able to be involved in providing clean water to developing countries. First, we worked in Tanzania. Most recently, we were able to provide clean water in Nicaragua. In Nicaragua, we provided significant amounts of Sawyer PointONE Filters, which use the same technology as that used in kidney dialysis. The tiny micro tubes in the filters are so small that 99.999% of bacteria is unable to pass through. This means that the bacteria that causes cholera, typhoid, dysentery, and e. coli-related diseases cannot be transmitted via the clean, filtered water to those who use it to drink or cook with. These filters can produce one gallon of safe drinking water in ten minutes and can be backwashing to continuosly provide virtually bacteria-free, drinkable water for decades or up to one million gallons. Because the water flows through this filter using only the power of gravity, no electricity is needed at all.
We decided to focus our efforts on providing safe drinking water for two primary reasons: (1) Lack of safe drinking water is the primary cause of disease in the world we live in today; and, (2) advances in technology have provided better tools and procedures that are simple and inexpensive to use to improve the quality of drinking water and provide safe ways of storing it.
The experiences our members have had working with these communities in need and making this kind of impact has encourage our entire club to remain committed to providing safe, clean water for people who need it. We would not be able to have such a significant impact without the kindness and generosity of all of those people who have participated in our annual Party in the Park fundraiser. We look forward to having you help us enjoy another successful year of turning wine into water!